Today, you all may hear of the big news in WordPress community from WooCommerce acquisition by Automatic, the parent company behind WordPress. The news was officially announced by WooThemes co-founders, Mark and Magnus and from Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg. Big congratulation to WooThemes team with their new chapter.
From WordPress user’s perspective as well as a web developer, we might have concern how this acquisition will impact the future of WooCommerce plugin and WordPress community. Would it remain community-oriented and free as before? Or even any change to the name WooCommerce under the new home?
It is too early to predict specific changes in WooCommerce roadmap in coming months and years. However, in the short term, a few things have been clarified by Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg.
Why turning WordPress into store is so important?
Back to 2014, Automattic raised 160$ million from investors, including Insight Venture Partners in the context that Automattic’s competitors like Weebly (raised $35million), Squarespace (raised $40million), Wix etc., had been investing as Recode.net noted.
Mullenweg explained in VentureBeat interview that they have been thinking about the best way to bring e-commerce to the WordPress world for a really long time. So a solution to turn WordPress into a store easily and simply is vital to make WordPress competitive, just like the way WordPress make it simple to publishing online.
The fact that WooCommerce acquisition is the largest Automattic have made to date indicates the role of WooCommerce as a great complement to help WordPress become more competitive against emerging ecommerce platforms like Squarespace, Shopify…
Mullenweg’s statement “The Woo team is a great complement to ours, and they have a product we think will address an even larger market than they do today” re-affirms such significant role of WooCommerce in the larger e-commerce space.
Is WooCommerce be part of WordPress.com or only available for WordPress.org?
Lot of websites have been building around WooCommerce, thus any change to this plugin would be a big concern to both WordPress users and web developers.
It will be interesting to see how WooCommerce would go in the coming time, meanwhile you can check out some clarifications Mullenweg shared via questions & answer section on his blog around this big move.
Being asked whether WooCommerce be integrated into WordPress core, Mullenweg asserted that:
WooCommerce will not be integrated into core, it works great as a plugin. There will definitely continue to be a marketplace for extensions.
On optimization perspective, how it would help WooCommerce to make it more efficient, Mullenweg said:
Speed, security, and optimization is definitely a passion of ours here at Automattic.
Whether the WooCommerce will be available for WordPress.com, Mullenweg clarified that:
It’s actually exclusively there. It’s already open source GPL. We don’t have plans currently for it to make it to WordPress.com
Mullengweg also shared big vision in his video announcement “I do believe that the web needs an open, independent and easy-to-use commerce platform that you can run yourself on your own website”. You can check out video below for more insights:
With the acquisition of WooCommerce, we hold strong hope that this excelling plugin continues its open source nature and its broad community of users and developers. And with over 7.5 million downloads and a million+ active installs WooCommerce has the potential to power even more of the web and transform e-commerce globally under its new home at Automattic.
So, any change to your next WooCommerce project in the coming time?